Nassau County Robotic Teams Compete in the Northeast Florida F.I.R.S.T. Robotics Tournaments
F.I.R.S.T. (For the Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) is a national program designed to provide accessible and innovative programs to encourage and inspire students to pursue opportunities in science, technology, engineering and math while building self-confidence, knowledge and life skills. FIRST information: http://www.usfirst.org
This year, Nassau County High School teams have traveled to Jacksonville, Gainesville, and Lake City to test their robotic prowess against other FTC (FIRST Tech Challenge) teams. The HMSH RoboFlashes, led by Christiana Morgan, and FBHS RoboPirates, led by Bradley Bean, smashed the other rookie teams in programming and mechanical design skills. The North Florida League Championship brought the alliance of YHS RoboStingers and the WNHS RoboTech Warriors together as they battled against the opposing alliance in the last round of the regional competition. While victory sided for their opponent’s robot, both teams were winners. The Connect Award went to the YHS RoboStingers inspired by YHS rookie coach, Carrie Hensley and the Inspire Award went to WNHS RoboTech Warriors led by Coaches Shari Braddock and Karol Siusta.
Nassau County sent seven FIRST Lego League (FLL) teams to tournaments in Jacksonville and Orange Park: Callahan, Hilliard, Fernandina Beach and Yulee Middle Schools and Bryceville, Hilliard and Wildlight Elementary Schools. The Fernandina Beach Middle School team, CHIK Hydo, and the Hilliard Middle Senior High team, Flashes, both won their competition and will compete for the Regional FLL Championship on February 3, 2018, at the Prime Osborn Center in Jacksonville. The event is open to the public and will have robotic exhibitions for ages 6 to 18.
The Nassau County School District’s robotics teams are sponsored by the Nassau Education Foundation and other donors. In 2015, the district first competed with a total of five teams. The district now has a total of eleven robotics team, one in each middle and high school, and three in elementary schools.